My latest H&M purchase was quite the hit, up until now. It’s no longer form fitting and sexy like Katrina had sworn in the dressing room this afternoon.
“Oh, yes! This is it! Everyone will either want to be you, or be with you,” she marveled with suspicious delight.
My envy-inspiring outfit now feels loose and damp, The music I had been swaying to earlier now seems to be invading my veins and is making my heart dizzy with panic; and I realize that I’m passed out on sticky porcelain with my leggings resting between my Madden wedges and cold, tainted tile. It’s as if my eyelids have been pinned to my flushed cheeks and my lips have been sewn shut.
“Miss? Hey, girl? I work here. Can you hear me?” beckons an unfamiliar male voice.
I yearn to jump up, pardon this embarrassing encounter, run for the exit and never return; but I can’t move.
“Oh my gosh! Is she OK? Are you her friend?” a shrill voiced girl asks.
“No. I don’t know her. Wow. How humiliating!” she proclaims in such a tone as if being besties with the bathroom attendant would be less degrading.
I can hear sighs and snickers alike. It sounds like every single stall is discussing pitiful me. How did I end up here? Where the hell is Katrina? I can feel the liquor poisoning my stomach. I can smell it on my skin. How could I be such a fool? If my eyes could open they would weep.
Fingertips graze my forehead, tuck brunette strands behind my ear and rest on the back of my neck. “You’re going to be all right. The fire station is on their way. They will make you safe. Don’t worry, girl,” soothes the same mysterious male voice.
If I could look this stranger in the eyes and thank him, I know that I wouldn’t. Rather, I’d plead for him to pull my leggings up, cover my face and lay me in my bed. Courage and confidence have completely escaped me.
Heavy footsteps approach me like a stampede. Gloved fingertips pull my face away from the stranger’s cradle and feel for a heartbeat. I want to tell him that the search is useless, that my heart is broken. The scent of latex is strong. My eyelids are pushed up and open to reveal probing stares and bright lights. Their medical jargon overwhelms me. With little delay, I’m carefully hoisted up off my throne of despair and laid upon a stretcher of shame. In any other instance I might have felt like a celebrity with the way the uniformed brigade parted the masses of club goers. However, I knew there wasn’t a shiny, tinted Tahoe awaiting me. There’s absolutely nothing glamorous about an ambulance.
As we wheel past the curious crowds I clench my eyes as tightly as I can and hum a lullaby in my head. I pray for their unkind words and harsh laughter to flutter away. I wonder if Katrina was witnessing my misery. Would she run to my side or disappear onto the dance floor and dismiss our friendship? I could hear her voice echoing in my mind as my rescuers lifted me into my chariot….everyone will either want to be you, or be with you. Even I had to laugh at this. I went from being the bell of the ball to the bathroom blunder in a matter of empty friendships and countless cocktails.